LAUNCHED TODAY: new Lib Dem Voice website – How Liberal / Authoritarian is your MP?

In just under an hour’s time, the Lib Dem Voice spring conference fringe takes place in Birmingham, marking the official launch of our new website: How Liberal / Authoritarian is your MP? The site’s web address is http://rank.libdemvoice.org.

(We will be uploading the podcast of the Lib Dem Voice fringe meeting here as soon as possible.)

How Liberal / Authoritarian is your MP? has a very simple aim: to provide an easy way for the public to find out online how liberal or authoritarian are the views of their MP according to his or her voting record in parliament.

Here’s what the welcome to the site says …

How Liberal / Authoritarian is your MP?

Liberal Democrat Voice has identified 10 key votes from the 2005-10 Parliament in order to rank all MPs according to how liberal or authoritarian their record is. All MPs are marked out of 100: the higher their score the more authoritarian they are. The lower their score the more liberal is their voting record.

You can find the full list here, or you can search for any MP by postcode, name or constituency using the search function to the right of this page.

You can find out more about the Liberal Democrats’ proposals to stand up for the civil liberties of the British people here. http://freedom.libdems.org.uk/

Here are some of the key findings:

  • 22 Lib Dem MPs score a perfect zero meaning they are 100% liberal. Just one Tory MP achieves this rating, and not a single Labour MP.
  • All Lib Dem MPs score less than 12 out of a possible 100, making the party the most liberal in Parliament.
  • Of the 340 most authoritarian MPs – all of whom are 65% authoritarian or more – 339 of them are Labour MPs.
  • 39 Labour MPs score the maximum possible authoritarian score of 100%.

Do please use the system, let us kow any technical issues you find, discuss our choice of votes below – and use social media tools such as Twitter and Facebook to spread the news about how liberal or authoritarian your MP is.

One important note: no ranking system is perfect, and How Liberal / Authoritarian is your MP? is no exception. For example, Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg scores 9 – which might imply that he is “less liberal” than Tory MPs who score lower than 9. The reality is that Nick as party leader cannot be present for all votes: the reason he scores 9 is simply that he was absent from three of the Commons votes we have used to rank MPs.

LDV’s thanks go to Chris Huhne and his staff who helped choose the votes; and especial thanks to our technical editor Ryan Cullen for his many hours of coding work.

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11 Comments

  • Interesting idea, and looks good, albeit with understandable limitations. Quick question though – the points scoring system appears to be 10pts for actively voting ‘authoritarian’ and 0 for actively voting ‘liberal’ with 3 points for an abstention. (Which makes some kind of sense, although personally I’d have thought 0, 5, 10 more logical – an abstention could equally be busy with something else, wanting the bill to go through but not wanting a name on it, or as part of a matched pair in which case you’ve no idea which side they are really on). Why though, does the FOI on MP’s act have 0 points for an abstention rather than 3 (hence the deputy speakers all having 27 points for continuous abstentions rather than 30). I really hope that there is a genuinely good answer, or is an honest mistake, otherwise it smacks of fitting the numbers to the answers you want rather than being honest about the partys voting record.

  • Surely the voting records of individual MPs are necessarilty skewed by the whip system. I’d have thought that the poor scores of back-bench Labour MPs is at least as likely to be saying something about their party loyalty as about their relative liberalism.

    Sorry, but the whole thing just seems dreadfully contrived and, well, a bit silly.

  • footsoldier 13th Mar '10 - 7:39am

    A bit of fun, I’m sure, but really rather pointless, imho. Time would have been much better spent delivering more leaflets in marginals …

  • Ryan – Thanks for that response, and I can see the logic. Apologies if that is explained elsewhere, I couldn’t see it on the main page.

  • Desmond Turner page has an error? Has the site not been filled in, or has he been deliberately missed off?

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